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The Colfax Massacre by Steve Payne

Author says: what if the Colfax Massacre had triggered a more general crisis in the South? Please note that the opinions expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of the author(s).

In 1873, on April 8th an armed revolt by former Confederates at Colfax on this day forced US President Ulysses S. Grant to acknowledge the growing power of the southern insurgency by declaring a State of Emergency in Louisiana.

After a bitterly contested gubernatorial election that highlighted the power of forces still threatening to tear apart the Union, both candidates had quickly declared themselves winners.

Unwilling to wait for a Republican federal judge in New Orleans to declare Republican William P. Kellogg the victor, White Democrats had moved quickly to put their man John McEnery in office. Seeking to regain power, officially or unofficially, Whites armed with rifles and a small cannon overpowered freedmen and state militia at the Great Parish Court House.

In an event which would repeat itself in a horrifying cycle of violence throughout the South, White Republican officeholders were not attacked but at least 105 African Americans were killed after they surrendered. Visiting U.S. Marshalls would made the grisly discovery of twenty bodies thrown into the Red River, and a further twenty which had been secretly buried.

Author says to view guest historian's comments on this post please visit the Today in Alternate History web site.

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Steve Payne

Editor of Today in Alternate History, a Daily Updating Blog of Important Events In History That Never Occurred Today. Follow us on Facebook, Myspace and Twitter.

Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items explore that possibility. Possibilities such as America becoming a Marxist superpower, aliens influencing human history in the 18th century and Teddy Roosevelt winning his 3rd term as president abound in this interesting fictional blog.


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